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Chronometree

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Album Review

Glass Hammer's fifth studio release finds the band paying homage to ELP-Tarkus-era progressive rock. The music is wrapped in a concept about a concept album. Their tongue-in-cheek approach saves them from the obvious criticism that easily could have been heaped their way. The story pokes fun at the egg-headed prog-rockers, including themselves, who took this type of music too seriously. On a serious note, a similar story to the one described actually happened to a Yes fan who spent too much time looking for a deeper meaning to Jon Anderson's lyrics. Keyboardist Fred Schendel is a dead ringer for Keith Emerson, and he adds direct quotes throughout. Vocalist Brad Marler can be grating, but is thankfully used sparingly. The musicianship is top-notch, and the sense of humor is appreciated, but on the whole, Chronometree falls flat. Where as Transatlantic did justice to the heroes of progressive rock in a creative and productive way, Glass Hammer's comes off as amateurish and aimless. Diehards will enjoy this, but casual fans are encouraged to check out their more original work, such as The Middle Earth Album or On to Evermore.

Customer Reviews

Breathtaking

Glass Hammer is without a doubt the most amazing band I've hit myself over the head for know learning about earlier. They incorperate syth beautifully into every song, doing everything from an almost ELP style virtuoso part in "Revelation - Chronometry" to a fantastically indescribable part in "An Eldritch Wind" to the rapid use of both traditional piano and prog synth in "Chronoverture". That said, other than the keyboards and drumming the instrumentals are notably straightforward and not particularly impressive, though they do sound good in a back up sort of way. The whole album is lots of fun for a prog metal fan of any calibur and it has certainly been my favorite purchase this year.

great

whether or not you will like this album depends on one thing. If like me you long for more of the great early prog bands like ELP Yes and Genesis then this is for you. Just listening to 30 second clips made me swear that Kieth Emerson was a member of this. Generally, the prog fans that don't like this are the ones looking for something completely different and original. Whats wrong with showing off the influence of your idols is what i say

Buy It

I don't know, or care, who wrote the main review of this album but it's amazing. The vocals are not "grating" at all and the analog-synth feel of this album is truly wonderful. I don't think it sounds like Emerson per se, but it certainly provides the warmth of the old-timey analog synths as well as Wakeman-like backfills. Excellent for any "old" synth afficionado, and excellent for anyone into progressive rock. Outstanding!

Biography

Formed: Tennessee

Genre: Rock

Years Active:

Glass Hammer began in 1992 when Tennessee musicians Steve Babb and Fred Schendel got together and began writing for a progressive rock concept album. That album, Journey of the Dunadan, was released the following year. Since the two men were basically the entire lineup of the group and played all of the instruments on the album, they would need to recruit musicians to perform the material live. Schendel had played with a drummer named Walter Moore in his last group the Obvious. They brought him in...
Full Bio
Chronometree, Glass Hammer
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